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The Philadelphia Experiment From A-Z

Allende Letters A Hoax?

As the years passed Carl Allen became bitter at the unwanted publicity of his letters, and the simple fact that everyone but him was profiting from his story. In 1969, to “get back at them all,” he handed Jim Lorenzen of A.P.R.O. (Aerial Phenomenon Research Organization) a copy of the Varo Edition (of Morris Jessup’s book, The Case for the UFO) with the following “confession” attached. Read the article below.


The Allende Letters A HOAX


As Appeared in the 1969 A.P.R.O. Bulletin, July-August edition.

by Jim L. Lorenzen


A recent visitor to APRO Headquar­ters was Carlos Miguel Allende C. (other wise known as Carl M. Allen ), author of the notorious “Allende Letters.”

Sr. Allende proceeded to verify a simple fact that we had long suspected that the famous (or infamous) letters and the associated notations, entered into a copy of M. K. Jessup’s “The Case for the UFO” and subsequently published by the Varo Manufacturing Company under an Office of Naval Research contract, were a one-man hoax contrived and executed by himself. The purpose? “To scare the hell out of Jessup.”

To a copy of the ONR-VARO publication which Allende furnished to APRO at the time of his visit he had added the following notation in his own handwriting: “All words, phrases and sentences underlined on the !01- lowing pages in brown ink are false. The below page and the top part of the following were and are the crazy est (sic) pack of lies I ever wrote. My object? To encourage ONR Research and to discourage Professor (sic) Morris K. Jessup from going further with investigations possibly leading to actual research. Then I feared invisibility and force-field research; I don’t now. (signed) Carl M. Allen.”

The statements referred to are on the second and third pages of the first letter received from Allende by Mr. Jessup as it appears in the ONR-VARO publication and consist of various statements referring to the “freezing,” “burning,” and “getting stuck” which purportedly occurred to sailors who had participated in invisibility experiments allegedly carried out by the U.S. Navy.

The notes entered into the Jessup book attributed to “Mr. A,” Mr. B,” and “Jemi” were all executed by Allende and all inferences concerning special knowledge of UFOs, force fields and mysterious events are of course Al­lende’s invention.

Allende explained that Jessup’s constant pressing for further unified field research alarmed him. He felt that a break-through in that area added psychologically to the impact of the atomic bomb and could have a catastrophically demoralizing effect on humanity especially young people. He therefore took the rather dubious route of perpetrating the “Letters” hoax to discourage Jessup.

According to Allende, he had no idea that his writings would ever be connected with Jessup’s in public print or that they would create such a furor. He said that he had remained silent for years hoping that interest would fade away but when a new (and highly sensationalized according to Allende) version of the matter by Brad Steiger appeared in print he decided to speak up. He wired Steiger’s publisher and attempted to have publication stopped but they did not respond even though questions of copyright and inherent proprietary rights are involved. Since Allende did not have the resources to pursue the matter through litigation at that time he decided to make the truth known and contacted APRO for that purpose.

Allende still believes, however, that a U.S. vessel, the S. S. Andrew Furuseth disappeared from its Philadelphia dock and reappeared seconds later in the Norfolk-Portsmouth area, then disappeared again to appear once more in its original berth. He suggested that the incident could be verified by contacting sailors who were assigned to the ship at the time ­some of whom he served with and knew personally. This seems like an excellent suggestion but as far as we know it has not been acted upon by the Navy or Varo, Inc. or Brad Steiger or Carlos Allende, for that matter. Since the story originates from a newspaper item based on the gin-mill account of sailors from the S. S. Andrew Furuseth, this writer is inclined to consider the source and let the matter rest.

A.P.R.O. Bulletin - July-August, 1969-Page 1
A.P.R.O. Bulletin - July-August, 1969-Page 3

Carl Allen continued to tell the story he firmly believed in as he always did, going on to do various interviews, and newspaper articles always maintaining that the experiment happened.

yes, I saw the ship (the DE-173) become invisible right before my eyes. Right before my eyes… ~ Carl Allen, Interview with Grey Barker 1978

Jim and Coral Lorenzen

Jim and Coral Lorenzen

Jim Lorenzen, born in Grand Meadow, Minnesota on January 2, 1922, graduated from Elkton High School in 1938 and worked as a professional musician until he joined the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1942 as a radio-operator mechanic until his discharge in 1945. He received the Air Medal with cluster, the Presidential Unit Citation with cluster and the Distinguished Flying Cross with cluster. He held several positions with various companies after his military career mostly as an engineer or chief engineer.

Mr. Lorenzen served as the International Director for APRO since 1964 which he founded with his wife Coral Lorenzen in January 1952. He published several books on the UFO subject which his wife co-authored. Jim Passed away on April 12, 1988.

“Allende still believes… that a U.S. vessel… disappeared from its Philadelphia dock and reappeared seconds later in the Norfolk-Portsmouth area, then disappeared again to appear once more in its original berth.” – Jim Lorenzen of A.P.R.O.

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